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X will charge all users for subscriptions

Elon Musk has announced that X, formerly Twitter, which generates up to 200 million posts a day, is preparing to charge all users for accessing the platform, The Guardian informs.

The owner of X said that paid access around the business would protect the platform from bots or automated accounts, which have become a real problem.

Speaking at a meeting with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Elon Musk, Tesla CEO and the world’s richest man, suggested that X would charge a fee to its user base. Currently, the only paid subscription on the platform is X Premium, which allows to verify user’s account. In a country like Ireland, it costs €11 a month.

We’re moving to having a small monthly payment for use of the system.

Noting that it costs “a fraction of a penny” to implement bots, Musk claims a paid subscription may discourage software operators.

“Plus, every time a bot creator wanted to make another bot, they would need another new payment method.”

According to the billionaire, X has 550 million monthly users who generate up to 200 million posts per day. Previously, the platform used a different method to measure the stats. It used monetised daily active users, which stood at 238 million before Musk bought the business in October 2022.

Musk decided to introduce paid access also because the platform faced a decline in advertising, the main source of revenue. The platform owner said the advertisers’ boycott was due to concerns about his leadership and management of inappropriate or hateful content. As a result, ad income fell by 60 per cent.

The conversation between Musk and Netanyahu began as a discussion about technology and artificial intelligence. However, it quickly turned to the topic of free speech and anti-Semitism amid accusations that X did not tackle racist speech on the platform.

Netanyahu expressed hope that Musk would find ways to quell anti-Semitism and other forms of hatred against X.

I encourage you and urge you to find the balance. It’s a tough one.

In his X account, Musk said he was “pro-free speech, but against antisemitism of any kind.”

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